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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Dear Sir/Madam, I just wanted to ask that essentially my employer

Resolved Question:

Dear Sir/Madam,
I just wanted to ask that essentially my employer withheld my entire salary only informing me in writing after working hours on payday.The organisations own policy states that overpayments even if agreed and not alleged cannot be taken out of wages without explicit agreement of both parties.I have been under severe mental distress and humiliation having to ask friends and family for basic monthly money.I have already involved my trade union but eventually plan to go to the Employment Tribunal and civil courts for all the distress caused.I wanted to find out what my legal position is if the organisation has deducted 100% of my salary without agreement or informing me in direct contravention to their own existing overpayment policy
Thanks
Omar
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Why did they withhold your salary?

Customer:

There was a dispute ongoing about overpayments and the organisation was going to write to me formally detailing the alleged overpayments and also sending me the overpayment policy .This was on the 11th of March 2014.Paydate is the 28th of everymonth and I did not receive any letter till after 17:02 on the 28th march so after working hours on payday and then telling me that all my salary has been deducted and paid me zero pounds

Ben Jones :

Whilst there may have been a policy on deductions from wages, the law actually entitles the employer to make deductions from wages without an employee’s consent if they are in order to recover overpayments. This is a right under the Employment Rights Act 1996 and would take precedence over any policies, although the employer would still need to give its policies some thought and follow them whenever appropriate.


 


So even though they have the legal right to make seductions to recover overpayments, they still need to act within the implied term of mutual trust and confidence, which exists in every employment relationships. This covers general fairness in the workplace so in the circumstances the employer would be expected to consider making the deductions over a period of time to ensure that you are not left with no pay. This may be allowed if it was your last salary and you were leaving as it would be the only opportunity your employer would have to make these deduction, but if your employment is continuing they need to ensure you are not left in such a situation where you have no pay at all and they need to act fairly.

Customer:

Thanks .There are three or four other people with exactly the same situation and overpayments but I have been the only one who has been singled out.

Ben Jones :

you have the right to challenge the employer over this - informally at first and then through raising a formal grievance if needed

Ben Jones :

Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? Thanks

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